[Marxism] Pentagon Plans Tighter Control of Interrogation (NYT)

Walter Lippmann walterlx at earthlink.net
Tue Nov 8 02:50:40 MST 2005

In the fun-house world of Washington's media manipulators, you have
to be better than a professional juggler to encompass all of their
contradictory messages:

They don't torture their prisoners, who are only "detainees", just
being held up in traffic on the way home to dinner with the wife and
kiddies after a long day at the office. Some of their long days at
the office have been going on for over three years and may never end.

They need an exemption from the anti-torture regulations which they
opposed when overwhelmingly adopted by the United States Senate not
long ago, even though they, uh, don't engage in torture. Especially
not at the newly-unveiled Gulag Archipelago in post-Soviet Eastern
Europe. In the West, often to self-righteous when Cuba obliges its
citizens to obey laws against paid collaboration with countries who
seek to overthrow its socialist system, the media are wondering why
African and Muslim young people have been rioting and buring up the
streets of various French cities, including Paris, when the French
regime has stood silent in the face of the torture of Muslims in a
U.S.-run prison camp at Guantanamo in US-occupied Cuba.

Today, though they still don't torture, and though they have not as
yet received the exemption from anti-torture rules they've sought,
Washington announces control over "questioning" prisoners whom they
don't, of course, torture, do they...

This must be the reason why the international terrorist bomber
Luis Posada Carriles cannot be sent back to Venezuela, a country
whose citizenship he holds, for fear he might be tortured there,
even though there is zero record of torture under the Bolivarian

As this news is released, maybe Cuba will be able to improve
the vote against the US blockade over those in the past. Remember
that one year ago, the Cuban motion was approved by 179-4, with one
abstention - Micronesia, and six absent. Who were the six absent?
El Salvador, Iraq, Morocco, Nicaragua, Uzbekistan, Vanuatu. See the
UN debate: http://www.un.org/News/Press/docs/2004/ga10288.doc.htm
The four opposed were the US, Israel, Palau and Marshall Islands.

Alice said we weren't in Kansas any more, so where are we today???

Walter Lippmann, CubaNews

November 8, 2005
Pentagon Plans Tighter Control of Interrogation

WASHINGTON, Nov. 7 - The Pentagon has approved a new policy directive
governing interrogations as part of an effort to tighten controls
over the questioning of terror suspects and other prisoners by
American soldiers.

The eight-page directive, which was signed without any public
announcement last Thursday by Acting Deputy Defense Secretary Gordon
R. England, will allow the Army to issue a long-delayed field manual
for interrogators that is supposed to incorporate the lessons gleaned
from the prisoner-abuse scandals last year.

The Army intends, for example, to ensure that interrogation
techniques are approved, up to the highest levels in the Pentagon,
that interrogators are properly trained and that personnel in the
field are required to report any abuses, Army officials said.

Such changes have been under consideration since the abuses at Abu
Ghraib prison were disclosed in April 2004, and reflect continuing
problems with abuses by troops in Afghanistan and Iraq since then.

The Senate has approved a measure by Senator John McCain, Republican
of Arizona, i to ban abusive treatment of prisoners in American

The new interrogations directive is also part of a wider effort by
the Defense Department, which began last December, to review the
treatment of prisoners in military custody.

A second directive, governing all aspects of prisoner detentions, not
just interrogation methods, has caused sharp debate within the Bush
administration. At issue is whether the Pentagon's broad guidelines
on detention should include language from the Geneva Conventions
barring the use of "cruel," "humiliating" and degrading treatment.

Some Pentagon officials said the interrogations directive was issued
now in part to mollify critics in Congress, where new strictures on
intelligence are being debated and where an amendment to a military
spending bill by Mr. McCain would prohibit the use of cruel and
degrading treatment of prisoners.

A Pentagon spokesman, Bryan Whitman, said that the timing of the
interrogations directive was unrelated to the initiatives on Capitol
Hill and that the instruction consolidated and codified many
procedures that had been put in place as a result of a dozen military
investigations into prisoner abuse in Iraq, Afghanistan and
Guantánamo Bay, Cuba.

"This directive provides the overarching Department of Defense policy
that mandates humane treatment of detainees," Mr. Whitman said.

President Bush, in remarks in Panama City after meeting with
President Martín Torrijos of Panama, sought to deflect recent reports
of detainee mistreatment and secret interrogation sites around the
world. "Our country is at war, and our government has the obligation
to protect the American people," Mr. Bush said. "Anything we do to
that end, in that effort, any activity we conduct, is within the law.
We do not torture."

The new Directive 3115.09, "DoD Intelligence Interrogations, Detainee
Debriefings, and Tactical Questioning," assigns responsibilities for
interrogation activities to senior Pentagon civilians and commanders;
establishes requirements for reporting violations of the policy; and
requires that Central Intelligence Agency interrogators follow
Pentagon guidelines when questioning military prisoners.

It also reaffirms that military working dogs may not be used in
interrogations and that military police may assist interrogators by
providing information about detainees' behavior, but may not
participate in the interrogations themselves.

"Acts of physical or mental torture are prohibited," says the
directive, a copy of which was obtained by The New York Times. The
policy directive does not elaborate other than to order that
detainees be treated humanely "in accordance with applicable law and

Approval of the interrogations policy now allows the Army to issue a
new field manual on interrogations, which was largely completed
months ago but has been delayed until the policy review was
completed. "It will be released very shortly," said an Army policy
maker, who like most officials interviewed for this article spoke on
condition of anonymity because the interrogations policy has not been
publicly announced.

Army officials have said the new manual, the first revision in 13
years, incorporates safeguards devised to prevent the harsh
techniques disclosed in the Abu Ghraib prisoner abuse scandal.

Interrogation techniques sought by Army field commanders must be
forwarded for review as high as the secretary of defense's office.
All interrogators must be trained and certified as prepared to do the

One defense official said that parts of the manual were still vague
and did not break any new ground in terms of acceptable interrogation
techniques. The official said the field manual was an exceptionally
important document for the Army, one that would not only guide the
training of future interrogators but that would be scrutinized for
how it incorporated the lessons of the abuse scandals that began with
Abu Ghraib.

"There is a lot more that could have been done," the official said.
"It could have been clearer." Army officials responded that the new
manual, known as FM 2-22.3, would be accompanied by a separate
classified training document providing dozens of interrogation
situations and going into exacting detail on what procedures might
and might not be used.

While Mr. England's approval of the interrogations directive advances
that part of the overall policy, a fierce debate still embroils
another major detention-policy document under revision, Directive
2310.01, "DoD program for Enemy Prisoners of War and Other

Two department officials said that Vice President Dick Cheney's new
chief of staff, David S. Addington, had continued to press senior
Pentagon officials to eliminate language from the Geneva Conventions
prohibiting "cruel," "humiliating," and "degrading" treatment. Other
senior Pentagon and State Department officials, as well as military
lawyers and the military's vice chiefs of staff support such

Mr. Cheney last Tuesday appealed to Republican senators in a private
lunch meeting to exempt the Central Intelligence Agency from similar
language that is contained in Mr. McCain's provision.

The officials said they believed a compromise version of the
contentious directive could eliminate an explicit reference to the
Geneva Conventions language and replace it with wording that captured
substance of the prohibitions; for example, that humane treatment
required provision of food, water, shelter, access to religious
worship and a ban on torture.

The Senate could vote as early as Tuesday on yet another detainee
issue, a proposal by Senator Carl Levin, Democrat of Michigan, to
create an independent commission to investigate prisoner abuses in
Iraq, Afghanistan and Cuba.

5 Rangers Are Charged

By The New York Times

BAGHDAD, Iraq, Nov. 7 - Five members of an Army Ranger unit have been
charged with kicking and punching three detainees in Baghdad on Sept.
7, the military said on Monday. Paul Boyce, an Army spokesman, said
the five, from the 75th Ranger Regiment, had been charged with
assault and maltreatment of prisoners and dereliction of duty.
Reuters reported that Mr. Boyce declined to identify the soldiers.

Carl Hulse contributed reporting for this article.

* Copyright 2005 The New York Times Company

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